Original Canadian WWI Mk.I Ross Rifle Bayonet and Leather Scabbard with U.S. WWI Surcharges - dated 1910
Original Item: Only One Available. The Ross rifle is a straight-pull bolt action .303 inch-calibre rifle that was produced in Canada from 1903 until 1918. The Ross Mk.II (or "model 1905") rifle was highly successful in target shooting before World War I, but the close chamber tolerances, lack of primary extraction and overall length made the Mk.III (or "1910") Ross rifle unsuitable for the conditions of trench warfare, exacerbated by the often poor quality ammunition issued. By 1916, the rifle had been withdrawn from front line service, but continued to be used by many snipers of the Canadian Expeditionary Force until the end of the war due to its exceptional accuracy.
This is an early Mk. I example, with the extended muzzle ring and the pinned pommel, and is in very good condition. A flat spring was inserted inside the muzzle ring to remedy problems with the bayonet separating from the rifle. The bayonet itself is dated 8 - 10 for August of 1910, and has proof and acceptance marks stamped into the wood and steel of the handle. The other side of the handle is marked with the manufacturer information:
ROSS RIFLE Co.
Many Ross bayonets had their blade profile drastically altered during WW I to provide a sharper point. However, this example is exactly as it left the Ross Rifle Co., Quebec, Canada factory in 1910, and is in great shape. The original factory grind marks can be seen in the hollow ground blade, and it does not appear to have been sharpened at all, and has no nicks. The lock mechanism functions correctly, and the spring in the barrel ring is still present.
The scabbard for this bayonet is also in very good condition. The top of the throat is marked with a proof mark, and the scabbard's leather body is stamped with Mk. 1 and dated 1915 next to a Canadian broad Arrow and R.C.. The scabbard is complete with most stitching intact, and the expected wear to the leather from being over 100 years old. The stitching on the frog was altered at some point to accommodate a wider belt.
In 1917, the U.S. Government purchased 20,000 Ross rifles and bayonets from Canada. These were intended for use in troop training due to the shortage of rifles and bayonets during the First World War. They were marked with U.S. and the Ordnance Dept. "flaming bomb" acceptance mark. This bayonet and scabbard were both accepted into U.S. Army service, as indicated by the U.S. surcharges on the leather of the scabbard and wood of the grip.
An excellent example of a rare bayonet, with an interesting history. Ready to add to your collection!
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